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“My kids and I loved this place!!”
Review of Cotton Tree Lodge

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Cotton Tree Lodge
Ranked #4 of 18 Punta Gorda B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“My kids and I loved this place!!”
Reviewed 21 September 2013

Traveled here with my two kids (ages 14 & 9) and we had such a great time! This lodge totally caters your every need... from the excursions to the food...everything was awesome. The chef is absolutely amazing as I was a bit worried that my kids were going to be picky eaters but even they loved all the fresh food. The excursions were perfect and gave us a great sense of the country. It was the rainy season but there was still plenty to see and do. We had such a great adventure seeing & hearing the monkeys, the lizards, spiders and everything the jungle brings. I cannot say enough about the staff...from Hector at the front desk, to Shawn, the chef and all the drivers and others that made our stay exactly what we were looking for. My kids even recommend this spot...and that's saying a lot coming from two kids that live by their cell phones& iPads!! : )
Thank you, Cotton Tree!!

  • Stayed July 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank KristinMac1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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271 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (76)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Le Roy, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 July 2013

Loved my stay at Cotton Tree Lodge! I was looking for time to relax and also a chance to learn about the culture of Belize. My visit allowed for a good balance. The grounds are lovely and well kept, and my cabana was comfortable and kept very clean. If you go, expect to see the types of insects and animals that one would anticipate in the middle of the jungle. I enjoyed watching the iguanas climb up and down the trees in front of my room, from the hammock on my veranda, which was my go-to spot for relaxation. The sounds of howler monkeys surround you at certain times of the day which was a unique and exciting experience. During our night, jungle hike with Armando we were amazed to learn that the spiders eyes glow blue in the dark and were able to watch a kinkajou dining on fruit. The staff at Cotton Tree is extremely efficient and welcoming. They will assist you in mapping out the day trips that will best provide you the opportunities you seek. Sean, the chef, is amazing! Menus are based upon on what is in season and available in the organic garden. From his homemade soups and breads to his yummy desserts, you'll be wowed on a daily basis with his creativity and skill. Eating family style gives guests the opportunity to make new friends as you talk over the day's experiences. The owners' presence and partnership with the people of Belize clearly is an advantage to both parties. Belizean people staff the lodge and keep it running smoothly, while the daily excursions help support the local economy. The tour of Eladio Pop's farm is one that shouldn't be missed. He is a gem of a man who is an unofficial spokesman for the rainforest's treasures and value. Mrs. Bo will serve as a fine instructor if you choose to learn to make tortillas at her house. And of course, the Mayan ruins are incredible to visit and learn about. Until I visit again, I dream about the sounds of the jungle that have been etched in my mind, remember the mango juice and coladas, and keep in my heart the people I met in Belize.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled solo
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Helpful?
3 Thank Leslie_L_N_
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bronx, New York, United States
Level Contributor
22 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 July 2013

I traveled to CTL on a Groupon and didn't quite know what to expect. My experience in the jungle went far beyond my expectations. The CTL staff was very kind and accommodating (even before the trip, they were great about answering my questions and helping me book in-country flights, all with very quick email responses - thank you Estevan!), the food was the most delicious food I've ever had, and as a solo traveler, CTL's excursions and meals encouraged travelers to get to know one another in a relaxed, peaceful environment. The cabanas are beautiful, and everything on the lodge grounds is excellently maintained. The one thing I would alert guests to is that because CTL is remote, they require a minimum of 4 guests on excursions. During their busy season, this isn't a problem at all. When I went, it was close to their low season, and since I was traveling alone, I had to coordinate with other couples to make sure we could all do the excursions we were interested in. It worked out and the CTL staff was great about helping us out to ensure we had a great stay. There were also on-site things to do that filled in the gaps in case there were not enough people for the special tours. I would recommend doing the all-inclusive package since it includes all the meals (a must!) and excursions you could possibly want. Everything is well organized, and as a solo traveler, I never felt unsafe. I also appreciate CTL's eco-friendly focus and the wonderful work they do to support local Belizean families, farmers, and cacao growers. I will be recommending this place to everyone!

Room Tip: Any of the rooms are great...but I personally would not choose the jungle room. It's quite a bi...
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2013, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Emily W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cottontreebelize, Owner at Cotton Tree Lodge, responded to this review, 14 July 2013
It's great to hear from single guests how easy it is to fit in on our tours. We encourage our guests to get to know each other by having family style seating for dinners and time to mingle over hors d'oeuvres prior to dinner.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
28 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 July 2013

This lodge may be the best in the area but I had a mixed experience. Upon arrival, the place was flooded. This meant that after a certain point we had to travel by boat to the area near the entrance. However, the walkways were submerged so we had to wade through the water to enter our cabin. Upon entering we were greeted by an army of insects in our bathroom. We requested a room change however the new room was in an area even more affected by the floods. Needless to say the circumstances were out of the ordinary-or is it? This area typically floods during the rainy season which is why it was closed. However, I did not receive any kind of heads up about this possibility.

What concerns me more was the response from management about this problem-a kind of what can we do attitude. I had suggested that announcements be made to guests so they could be kept abreast of the situation and left guessing about the situation and the status of their day plans. However, this never happened. Also I suggested that free wifi and laundry be provided as a way for compensating for the inconvenience. This was offered, however only to the guests that complained. In my opinion, this lodge has some strengths:

1. spacious bungalows
2. excellent day tour experiences: Eladio Pop's cacao farm (do not miss and make sure to watch video on his life and family while there), Ixcacao, horseback riding through the jungle to Santa Rosa cave with Mr Chen (a local Mayan and wonderful guide), and Medicinal plant tour with Santiago (learned so much).

However, challenging situations are the true test of management and I felt that this is where Cotton Tree falls short. Hopefully this can be reverse. It was easy making the reservation with Jeff via email, but the situation on the ground in terms of overall management style seriously needs improvement. I had encountered flood related issues prior to arriving at Cotton Tree and the difference in the way it was handled was like night and day (At Caves Branch with Eugene).

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank bluehornet2009
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cottontreebelize, Owner at Cotton Tree Lodge, responded to this review, 14 July 2013
This was a very challenging time for us at Cotton Tree Lodge as it is an unusually rare event for our property to flood like this while we are open. We close for the rainy season July 16th to October 31st because there is a higher possibility of flooding this time of year. Unfortunately, the rains came very early this year and we had the biggest flood we ever experienced happened during this guest's stay. My partner and co-owner Chris Crowell personally called the resort where this guest was staying just prior to his arrival and asked for them to pass along the message "we are in a flood situation, there will be extreme conditions, and the guests should be notified prior to their departure". This communication happened 5 hours prior to our scheduled pickup of the guests. Unfortunately, the guests were on a tour at the other resort at that time and apparently were never notified. I can understand how upsetting it can be to not be informed and we strive to set expectations for our guests to help keep everyone happy. It's unfortunate that we were unable to do so this time.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Waterbury, Connecticut
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 26 June 2013

My boyfriend and I spent a lovely week at the lodge in June. We arrived in the middle of the night and Pablo was courteous enough to wait up for us (well after his shift had ended and the office was closed down for the night) to be sure we were comfortably settled in our room. The entire staff was equally as wonderful throughout the course of our trip. The food was excellent! Sean, the chef, was not only very skilled at his craft but also very conscientious. Most of the food is grown or raised right there on the property. It was really exceptional. The lodge itself is beautiful, built mostly out of locally foraged trees that had fallen during a hurricane and sitting on one hundred acres of beautiful, lush rainforest. The activities were a blast and well organized. All of our tour guides were very knowledgable and fun. It was certainly hot, but we anticipated that. The bugs seemed to really like my boyfriend but didn't care for me too much (luckily). Invest in some bug spray and you should be fine. If you get a chance to do the evening liqueur tasting do not pass it up! All together an unforgettable experience.. We're already talking about returning.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Dora S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cottontreebelize, Owner at Cotton Tree Lodge, responded to this review, 14 July 2013
We're so glad to hear you enjoyed your stay and we welcome a return visit. We offer specials to return guests and would be happy to see you again soon!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Waterbury, Connecticut, United States
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 25 June 2013

My girlfriend and I stayed at the Cotton Tree Lodge for 7 nights in June of 2013. We enjoyed every aspect of our stay. The property was beautiful, the staff was very friendly, the food was exceptional, and the experience was unforgettable. Of course, it was hot, and we got some mosquito bites, but these are things we anticipated before arriving. The Cotton Tree Lodge offered a comfortable stay in a remote part of the world, allowing us to truly experience the jungle and the culture of the region, without having to sleep in a tent. Great value, great experience. We have no complaints. Thanks!

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Michael R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cottontreebelize, Owner at Cotton Tree Lodge, responded to this review, 14 July 2013
Thanks for your kind words!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 June 2013

The Cottontree Lodge provides an interesting vacation in the Jungle. The Lodge and Cabanas are beautifully built using local wood and traditional building plans and techniques. The activities are carefully planned and organized. I really enjoyed the snorkeling! The food is fresh and mostly grown on the property. The Head Chef is very conscientious regarding allergies and likes/dislikes. He is also very unique, well liked and personable.
However, there are a few concerns such as: lack of adequate personnel management and training. These issues manifested in lack of electricity, confusion over times of planned excursions, and what I consider to be mismanagement of animals (the goats).
I suggest that you carefully avoid the rainy season! The other guests and I were bitten up severely by mosquitoes, horse flies and sand fleas (over a 200)! Good thing that I took my malaria medication. The nights were miserably hot and humid! The bedroom fans were basically ineffective due to quality and the occasional lack of electricity.
This is NOT a place for the elderly or very young children.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank bpst16992
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
cottontreebelize, Owner at Cotton Tree Lodge, responded to this review, 18 June 2013
I'm sorry to hear that your stay was less enjoyable than you had hoped. The transition from the dry season to the rainy season does tend to bring about hot nights and lots of bugs for a few nights. Once we're in the rainy season the conditions greatly improve. I will look into what exactly happened with the electricity but in general it has not been a concern. I'm sure that is no comfort when the fans stop working on a hot and humid night! If you would like to contact me directly off line (just phone the US office), I would appreciate better understanding your comment about management and training. We take this very seriously and are always looking for ways to improve.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Cotton Tree Lodge

Property: Cotton Tree Lodge
Address: Moho River, Punta Gorda, Belize
Phone Number:
Region: Belize > Toledo District > Punta Gorda
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 18 B&Bs / Inns in Punta Gorda
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Cotton Tree Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our eco-lodge is hidden between the Moho River, the rain forest, and Mayan villages in southern Belize. Stay in beautiful thatch cabanas with private bathrooms and verandas. Enjoy delicious cuisine prepared with organic produce from our garden. Try kayaking, birding, swimming, and horseback riding on the grounds. Connect with the people and culture of Belize on daily tours to villages, Mayan ruins, cacao farms, caves, waterfalls, and more. Or simply relax in a hammock all day. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Cotton Tree Hotel Punta Gorda
Cotton Tree Lodge Belize/Punta Gorda

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